Winifred Holtby Academy

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About Winifred Holtby Academy

Name Winifred Holtby Academy
Ofsted Inspections
Principal Karen Farmer
Address Midmere Avenue, Leads Road, Hull, HU7 4PW
Phone Number 01482826207
Phase Academy
Type Academy converter
Age Range 11-16
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1338
Local Authority Kingston upon Hull, City of
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Leaders and staff put the pupils of Winifred Holtby Academy at the centre of everything that they do. Staff and pupils share strong relationships.

Pupils feel safe and trust adults to help them if they are concerned about something or feeling upset. Many pupils say that bullying is rare. If it happens, it is dealt with by the school.

Leaders have high expectations for every pupil. These expectations are shared by staff and are reflected in the calm and purposeful environment in the school. Pupils benefit from a strong curriculum that meets their needs and helps them to achieve well.

Leaders carefully consider the curriculum for each pupil. This is with the ai...m of ensuring the best possible outcome for them. Staff provide personalised support for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities(SEND).

This helps these pupils to experience a high-quality education.

Leaders help pupils to develop personal attributes that enable them to behave well and learn effectively. They widen pupils' horizons by raising their awareness of different careers.

Pupils have opportunities to join different clubs to develop their fitness and their social awareness. These include wheelchair basketball, knitting and LGBTQ+ clubs. The pupils who attend these clubs spoke positively about their experiences.

What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?

Leaders make sure that the quality of education that pupils receive is of a consistently high standard. Teaching is matched to the needs of the pupils and taught by staff with strong subject knowledge. Leaders have designed a curriculum that gives pupils access to a wide range of knowledge and skills.

Recent changes at key stage 3 have added extra breadth. Over time, the curriculum helps pupils to remember important knowledge from the topics they have studied. Leaders have high ambitions for what they want pupils to achieve.

This ambition is further reflected in the increasing numbers of pupils studying the English Baccalaureate suite of qualifications.

The school has a clear and consistent approach to assessment. This is embedded in most subject areas.

Teachers use assessment to help pupils to identify gaps in knowledge and to check their understanding. Where these approaches are not fully embedded, there are clear plans in place to further develop this.

Leaders have prioritised reading across the school.

They support pupils who find reading difficult. They use a variety of assessment tools to identify specific barriers, such as phonic knowledge, comprehension or fluency. There has been careful consideration of how to develop pupils' vocabulary and their love of reading.

Strategies such as whole class reading and work on subject-specific vocabulary are enabling pupils to read with greater purpose.Pupils understand leaders' high expectations for behaviour. In lessons and around the building, pupils are polite and courteous.

When behaviour falls short of expectations, staff address this well. Staff use the system of 'warn, move, remove' to manage behaviour in a staged and proportionate way. Although some pupils feel that consequences are not used consistently, behaviour strategies are supporting high standards of behaviour.

Pupils' attendance is too low and this is particularly the case for pupils with SEND and those in receipt of the pupil premium. Leaders recognise this needs to improve. Leaders have made recent appointments to increase capacity in the attendance team.

There are some early signs of improvement. Despite this, poor attendance is impacting negatively on pupils' academic outcomes. Those pupils who are absent miss out on learning and are too often not catching up on work missed.

Leaders develop pupils' social, moral, spiritual and cultural development well. Pupils value their achievements and this is evident in the pride they take in their well-presented work. Pupils learn about protected characteristics and British values and can discuss these subjects well.

Pupils with SEND benefit from well-considered pastoral and academic support. Those attending the HUB (a specialised provision in the school for pupils with SEND) are taught by specialist staff with expertise in this area. The support offered to these pupils is highly effective.

Pupils benefit from high-quality careers advice and guidance across key stages 3 and 4. Pupils receive independent careers advice and guidance alongside careers discussions that take place in the context of their subjects.

Staff feel supported by leaders.

During the course of inspection, staff and pupils were keen to share how proud they were to be a part of the Winifred Holtby Academy. Leaders, including those responsible for governance, recognise the important role the school plays in the community. Leaders at all levels are driving improvement at the school.

Many have a strong understanding of the effect of their work. However, oversight of some areas of the school, notably pupils' behaviour and the use of alternative provision, lacks precision.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders have built a highly effective culture of safeguarding at the school. Staff understand the risks that pupils might face and know how to report concerns over pupils' safety or welfare. Records show that swift action is taken to support pupils when concerns arise.

Leaders have identified local safeguarding risks that pupils may face and these are understood by staff in the school. Pupils are taught about how to keep themselves safe.Leaders and staff know their pupils and families well.

Teachers are trained to identify any safeguarding concerns. Leaders have effective systems in place for staff to report and record any concerns. They work closely with a range of external agencies to ensure that pupils and families receive timely help and support if necessary.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Leaders' oversight of some important aspects of their work, such as the use of alternative provision, lacks precision. This means that leaders, including those responsible for governance, do not have as precise an understanding of the impact of their work as they might. Leaders should ensure that they have better oversight of their work in this area so that they identify areas that require further development.

• Attendance rates at the school, notably for pupils in receipt of the pupil premium and those with SEND, are not improving well enough. This impacts negatively on the achievement of some pupils in these specific groups. Leaders should intensify actions to secure better rates of attendance, especially amongst more vulnerable pupil groups.

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